June 2008


Turns out that my little milk junkie is really just a recreational user. He’s not actually, you know, *eating*.

We’re lucky to have a really awesome lactation consultant. She works out of our pediatrician’s office, and she actually taught all of our baby classes. She has a clinic twice a week where we can go with questions and to get weight checks done.

Which is how we learned that H has only gained 2 ounces in the past week. Which is not enough. She sent us home on Tuesday with instructions to really work on pushing him to eat–he’s a very lazy nurser, and he pretty much just wants to snooze on the boob. (Who doesn’t, really? It’s not that I blame him.) Anyway. I spent 48 hours trying to feed him as much as I could, and he spent those 48 hours acting like he was starving and refusing to let anyone else hold him. And we went back today to learn that he hadn’t gained any more weight.

At which, of course, I started crying, making the lactation consultant spend part of her valuable time patting me on the back and assuring me that it’s really H’s fault, and not mine, and that he’s fine, really, and we can fix this.

Anyway. So as of this afternoon, H is getting supplemental formula from syringes, to reduce the whole nipple-confusion issue (which I’m not sure I even buy, but whatever, and I do want to keep breastfeeding after this whole supplementing thing is over, so I’ll work with it). He seems very confused about the whole thing, understandably–why has mama gone crazy and started pulling him off the boob to give him weird-tasting formula at what must seem to be random intervals? But he’s being a trooper, and I’ve been assured that this will help with the weight gain.

And I am so freaked out that I lack the skills to keep my child alive that I may give up even the tiny hour-long naps that have been keeping me alive in favor of just Worrying Full Time.

Anyway. Still waiting for the Zoloft to kick in–I’ve been taking half doses, but I’m going up to a full dose tonight. Still counting on things getting easier soon. Still getting randomly weepy remembering my Old Life with the drinking and the bars and the kissable friends.

Still also loving the hell outta my boy, though, so that helps.

I am really hoping to get back to blogworld soon…I’m reading blogs, but not commenting yet. But I miss y’all. I’ll be back around….

Gratuitous H picture: he’s got the blog-anonymity thing down.

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Many thanks to Ursa for checking to see if I’m still alive, and to all of you who’ve checked in on facebook and various other venues. I am, in fact, still alive, and hanging in there…barely, but we’re hanging in.

My sweet boy has decided that the only acceptable place to be if he’s awake, or barely awake, or almost asleep, or waking up, is at the 24-hour buffet. And he’s not okay with anyone else holding him–not even his awesome daddy, who can usually soothe him with no problem. H. is now about All Mama All The Time. It’s exhausting, and it’s hard to blog one handed. I keep worrying that he’s not eating enough, but i think he’s just not eating much at a time–he’s a bigtime snacker/comfort nurser. I’m not entirely sure how to fix this situation, and I’ve been too tired to try very hard, honestly.

And having my mom here is hard. I’m not entirely sure that the benefit of her being here outweighs the stress and lack of privacy (I mentioned it’s a 1 bedroom apartment, right? And mom is in the one room with a door, and GB and I sleep in the living room? It’s our choice, of course, but it’s not very  private, and GB is starting to feel very claustrophobic). She can’t do a whole lot with H, since he mostly just wants me, and she tries to help with other stuff, but overall it’s kind of a tense situation.

And I still have no appetite, and I think that’s related to my new Giant Stomach Pains–though those could be coming from the antibiotics, too. Or the Zoloft, which I’m also trying to get used to.

And we still can’t manage to get out of the house, ever, since all I still want to do is sleep.

So yeah. It’s kind of a hard time here right now. I keep saying–and promising GB–that things will get better, and I do hope that’s true. Sooner would be better.

But my boy keeps getting cuter. Here’s my sweet li’l sleeper:

i hope, we’ll see.

i went to the doctor today because i had a fever and chills last night. i saw the nurse practitioner, who i always like. she wasn’t sure where the fever is coming from, but she prescribed me a broad, breastfeeding-friendly (as much as possible, i guess) antibiotic.

Then she came out to the waiting room to meet H., who was with my mom. My mom–in a move that both annoys and pleases me–asked me, “Did you ask her about the antidepressants?” Which of course I hadn’t, but then I kind of had to. I said i was going to ask at my next appointment (in 2 weeks), but the NP said, Why don’t you just start one now, and then check in with the doctor on it at your next appointment?

So I sit here now with a shiny new bottle of Zoloft in front of me–apparently the “best choice” (according to everything I read) for BFing moms who need Serious Medicinal Help. And that would be me. I haven’t taken it before, but it’s supposed to work for anxiety, panic, and OCD (like my beloved Lexapro), but with fewer effects on the baby.

So here’s hoping.

I do generally hate the process of going on a new SSRI…with the celexa and lexapro i got (severe) hot flashes, nausea, fatigue. I’m hoping this goes better, but I guess toughing it out for a week with crappy side effects beats Crazy Anxiety from Hell That Makes Me Nonfunctional.

Right?

(They also rechecked my TSH–i have hypothyroidism from long before i was pregnant, you’ll recall, and i know it can sometimes swing the other way postpartum, so that may be something too.)

All in all, a good appointment, and I’m hoping this all starts working well, and soon.

Gratuitous baby-post-sponge-bath photo ahead:

Because, yes, you all are more helpful than my pediatrician. Or my mom, unfortunately.*

does anyone have experience with breastmilk jaundice?

H had his 2 week appointment today. he’s gained a little weight–less than i’d like, but a normal amount, apparently. He was 7 lbs 12 oz last tuesday, and 8lbs 2oz today (so 4oz over his birthweight). But he’s still a little jaundiced, so he had to have another heel stick (I didn’t cry at this one though, so i guess that’s progress).

The doctor just called me back and said his levels aren’t bad–11.5 (he was at 13 last week).  He thinks it’s breastmilk jaundice and said we can do one of two things. Apparently, stopping breastfeeding for a day should clear it up–but H is exclusively breastfed and has never had a bottle, and I really don’t want to do that if we don’t have to. He said we could also just not do anything–since his levels are low, and the dr. says it’s not dangerous, anyway–and then we can go get him checked again in 2 weeks.

So–if breastmilk jaundice isn’t dangerous, and we can wait 2 weeks to get rechecked, why would I want to stop breastfeeding for a day to clear it up? that seems unnecessary to me (and the dr. agreed we don’t need to)–but am I missing something? I’m not wrong for not wanting to do a day of formula to fix something that is supposedly not a big deal, am I? Advice on this would be greatly welcomed…

(In other H-related topics, have I mentioned that I think I have some PTSD from H’s birth? I really do. I think GB has some serious trauma stemming from the birth, too. I may blog more about this at some point…It’s weird; neither of us can talk or think about it, and I can’t even think about birth in general without serious anxiety at this point. it really was much, much, much worse than either of us were expecting…and it’s not getting much better in retrospect. GB and I have both noted that we’re just waiting for the memory to fade, really. I think this may be contributing to my current anxiety levels…)

ETA: I almost forgot to include a picture of my gorgeous 2 week old boy!

*we’re switching to another doctor in the practice…though i’m not sure how to solve themom thing.

…a bad mama already?

Or am I maybe a smidge depressed?

Friends, things here are hard lately. H is a super sweet baby and we are completely smitten with him. But he does love the all-you-can-eat buffet (aka “mama”), and he pretty much wants to snack all the time. Because I got all worried about the jaundice last week (and because of course I am not about to refuse him anything anyway), I am pretty much fine with letting him snack and nap all he wants. But it’s a little tiring, I have to say.

He doesn’t sleep so great at night, either, and that’s wearing a little thin. During the day–when he’s not at work–GB is awesome with H. He can calm him down like nobody’s business, and he hangs out with him so I get some sleep. The deal, then, is that I pretty much take the night shift–since GB needs to sleep enough to be able to work during the day, and all H wants at night is me, anyway.

This is all fine, but it means that I’m sleeping in 1/2 – 1hour spurts. Last night I put H in bed with us (in his Snuggle Nest–which still freaks me out, even though he’s not *right* in bed with us, but I was desperate) and he slept longer–almost 2 hours. And I know this is all normal and fine. But I’m tired, friends.

And more than that, I feel like I might be kind of a failure already. All the things I intended to do with H–co-sleeping and babywearing, specifically–are not so much working out. I want him right in the bed with us, but I’m too anxious that way–I feel much better having him in the cosleeper next to the bed with the movement monitor on. But then I feel like a big loser for not having him right there with us. And I keep trying to put him in the sling (I have 3 pouch slings and a Moby wrap, and a Bjorn–so lots of options), but I can’t get him in there so he looks comfortable and then I’m like, why can’t I get it together to put him in the sling? What is wrong with me? And yes, it’s true that we don’t really go anywhere yet (which is also an issue), and that either GB or me or my mom are pretty much always holding him, but I still feel like I should already have the sling thing down, and what is my problem, anyway?

And when he’s asleep, all I want to do is sleep too, since obviously that’s all the sleep I’m getting. And when he’s awake, I’m feeding him. And then I’m worried that we’re not doing enough with him, that he should be getting way more tummy time than we’re giving him (according to our lactation consultant/physical therapist, who I really like), that I suck because I’m not playing with him or reading to him or carrying him around. That I’m just the anxious, sleepy mama who can’t even manage to get a shower, let alone bathe my slightly crusty baby.

GB thinks I need to talk to someone (and I’m not sure who that would be, anyway) about maybe getting back on those antidepressants. But I’m worried about taking them and breastfeeding, and I don’t know if the ones that are breastfeeding-compatible (somewhat) will do anything for me anyway, and there is no freaking way I’m stopping the breastfeeding when really, it’s the only thing I feel like I’m doing right at this point (I hope–I’m anxiously awaiting H’s next weight check on Wednesday).

Sigh. I’m rambling. I’m tired. My baby rocks, and I know that it sounds a little crazy to be worrying that I’m already fucking things up. Is that crazy? Will I eventually get this all together? Or am I just off to a crappy start?

Oh, and my mom is helping out a lot, and is also completely stressing me out, and I’m not sure which side of that is winning. It’s a toss-up.

Okay. I needed to vent a bit. H is peacefully sleeping on Grandma’s lap right now, and I’m going to take a half hour nap (I hope), and then I *might* try to shower, though I think that’s a bit ambitious.

My boy is getting more handsome every day, though, despite my parenting difficulties. Thanks, y’all, for encouraging the posting of pictures…I do like sharing him with y’all. Here’s my sleepy little tyrant:

I forgot to check this earlier, but it looks like Skycat won the Buzzlet pool, as the only person to guess June 3rd.

Honorable mention to Weezy, who was exactly 24 hours off, and Gretty, who guessed June 2nd, late evening (we were in the hospital then, waiting things out).

I’m still reading all your blogs, but commenting is hard with only one hand–H. pretty much eats All. The. Time, and I’m napping when he’s not eating. We’ll get into a rhythm at some point (oh, I hope), and I’m hoping to be able to start doing, you know, human things again soon. Right now I am a Giant Milk Machine who sleeps in hour spurts (sometimes even Two! Hours! at a time, but those are far between right now). Tomorrow I might try to duck out for 20 minutes and go get a frappuccino while my mom watches H. We’ll see how that goes.

This whole post, of course, is  just an excuse to post another picture.

  • This is not surprising:

    -2

    As a 1930s wife, I am
    Very Poor (Failure)

    Take the test!

  • No blogging lately because I always have my arms full of baby. The learning curve, she is steep with this baby business. Right now he’s sleeping on my chest…thus the quick blogging, with Two! Hands!
  • Friends, I am beat. I have a sleepy eater who wants to nurse All. Freaking. Day. (and night) We’re working on this …but yeah, it’s a problem. I’m sleeping in tiny bits during the day, not at all at night.
  • My mom got here today, to stay with us for a month and help. I am positive she will be an enormous help…though so far today, things have been stressful. Mom is a smidge opinionated on how to do things for H., and I’m trying to learn as I go, and it’s all a bit much.
  • My anxiety and OCD are through the freaking roof. I’m working on that too. But I might need to think about getting back on antidepressants sooner rather than later. I really don’t want H to have a crazy anxious mama.
  • H. has a little jaundice, which I know is normal-ish but is freaking me out. We had to take him in to get his levels checked on Friday and Saturday. I cried way, way more than he did with that first heel stick.
  • As far as sleeping when the baby sleeps–I’m trying. I can do it if GB or GB’s mom (who’s gone now) or my mom is watching him, but at night when everyone is asleep, I absolutely cannot sleep. I just sent my mom out for a movement monitor that will hopefully help with my crazy-obsessive worrying. Because between my insane worrying and neuroses and “normal” new-mom worries, I’m starting to worry that I might never sleep again.
  • Remember the neighbor who asked if I was dilated yet? I walked past her to get the mail and she said, “So, no baby yet?” Um. I realize my body is not quite bouncing back, but dude? I don’t really look 10 months pregnant anymore. But, you know, thanks for that.
  • GB is 10 times the dad I expected him to be. Really, it’s amazing to watch him. He’s never spent any time with babies in his whole life, ever, but that boy has some instincts….or he just really, really likes our baby. (And really, who wouldn’t?) He’s an incredible dad. I am so proud, and H and I are so lucky.
  • I am not quite feeling like such a great mama, overall, but…well, I’m trying. We’ll keep working at it. I’m thinking that a little more sleep will make me feel like a better mom.
  • My mom is bringing me McDonald’s. I am so happy about that, I can’t even tell you.
  • GB went into work today. He’s going to be working fewer days and less hours, but it sucks to not have him here, and he’s not happy about the working. Being a contract employee kind of sucks.
  • Want to see my gorgeous big six-day-old boy? Oh, I know you do.

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